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Nintendo Refutes Wii Shortage

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the not-our-prob-bob dept.

Nintendo 79

Nintendo has responded to accusations leveled against it earlier this week by GameStop, saying that Wii shortages are due to demand. Nintendo's George Harrison told Next-Gen.biz in a phone interview that "That's not at all the case. We have worldwide territories that are all competing over the available production. The Japan and European markets are doing extremely well with the Wii. People in Japan at NCL [Nintendo Co. Ltd.] are making the best decisions that they can about which products get shipped to which market and when." An EU marketing director is also quoted at GamesIndustry.biz responding to criticism about the lack of new Wii titles, as well as the supply shortage. Nintendo's Laurent Fischer asserts that the company has a 'release it when it's ready' attitude, and that they'll release products when they meet the company's standards.

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LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (4, Funny)

Sciros (986030) | more than 7 years ago | (#18548491)

Hehehe that one never gets old.

I also think Gamestop's idea about Nintendo trying to purposefully withhold units is probably wrong... there's some logic there but it's weak given that a lot of people WANT TO BUY ONE right now and it won't really hurt Nintendo any to sell a console now rather than next week...

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (2, Insightful)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 7 years ago | (#18548555)

When it comes to GameStop vs. anyone else, I think my biases would lean to whoever that other party is. Let's just say that GameStop's retail practices aren't totally upstanding.

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (1)

D'Sphitz (699604) | more than 7 years ago | (#18548879)

Who knows, but damn near every next gen console release ends up the same, with customers unable to get their hands on one. I don't know if it's intentional to build hype, incompetence, or who knows what but people actually WANT to buy your product, but you won't sell it to them. That just makes no sense, impulsive buyers don't place backorders, and most likely won't come back every week until they're in stock, they'll go buy an Xbox or PS3 to satisfy their urge to buy. I'd own a Wii right now, but the 360 was in stock, now i'll likely never buy a Wii.

This reminds me of a sports writer I believe who once wrote to Bud Sehlig regarding blackouts and non-televised MLB games: "Major League Baseball, you have a great product, it's too bad you won't let me buy it."

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (4, Insightful)

zippthorne (748122) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549041)

It's much more simple than that. There is an impulse of demand right at the beginning, and possibly increasing demand following that, but the production is a continuous process. So unless you over-produce (and incur the capital expense of setting up more factories than necessary) there will be a shortage at the beginning, and it will continue until production out paces increasing demand (due to exposure) for long enough to catch up.

Ideally, they will size their production to the continuous demand at middle-of-life to end-of-life, rather than over build and then decommission factories that do not produce enough to break even before becoming unnecessary.

The other option is more liquid pricing, similar to the way airlines do it, to ensure that everyone that wants one badly enough can get one, but this does not help customer goodwill and leads to cries of "price gouging."

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (1)

D'Sphitz (699604) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549427)

Yes but i'd think by now they'd realize there is going to be a demand. Rather every time they rush the launch of their new highly anticipated system knowing they have a very limited supply, and millions of fans go home disappointed. Doesn't seem like the best business practice. Or maybe it is, I don't know.

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (1)

The PS3 Will Fail (998952) | more than 7 years ago | (#18550487)

"Yes but i'd think by now they'd realize there is going to be a demand. Rather every time they rush the launch of their new highly anticipated system knowing they have a very limited supply, and millions of fans go home disappointed. Doesn't seem like the best business practice. Or maybe it is,"
Let's see - either ramp up production for the release at levels that you will never again need (and incur that huge expense - and the worst possible time; the transition from generation to generation is not a good time.) or build production at a reasonable rate but then stuff the consoles in a warehouse and wait until you've got a really big pile of them and then release (the whole time paying to have them sit there). Furthermore, there's not even a guarantee of what numbers to meet so if your little idea of "not rushing" (i.e. sitting on manufactured units) comes to fruition, you don't even know how big a pile you need before you can release.

"I don't know."
The most true statement you made in that whole post.

Manufacturers can't possibly satisfy init. demand (1)

LKM (227954) | more than 7 years ago | (#18565485)

Yes but i'd think by now they'd realize there is going to be a demand.

Of course they realize that. So what are they supposed to do? As far as I can tell, they have two options:

  1. Have huge production capacity before the launch. That'sa a bad idea, since they can't be sure if it'll flop or how big exactly demand will be until they start selling, and even if the product does not flop, demand will eventually decrease, and then they will have to deal with having useless production capacity. So that would be a big waste of money for production capacity they will eventually not need.
  2. Don't start selling until you have produced a big number of machines. That's essentially what Sony has done in Europe, and it has resulted in several issues: People are upset because they had to wait longer, Nintendo has been able to sell the Wii for months with essentially no competition, the PS3 didn't sell out, which made people pronounce it a failure, and finally, had there been a problem with the European PS3s, Sony would have millions of broken consoles on their hands before they had noticed it.

There's simply no way console manufacturers can predict how many consoles they'll sell, and there's no way they can make enough to satisfy initial demand.

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (1, Flamebait)

Wdomburg (141264) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549079)

Right. Nintendo should snap their fingers so that more consoles magically appear.

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (1)

D'Sphitz (699604) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549297)

Or maybe they could prepare for their release a little better, maybe by making more units. When every new console is virtually un-findable for weeks after release it's pretty apparent they should be stocking up better beforehand, but then their marketing departments lose the inflated impression of having a super-hot in-demand item, which is probably what this is all about.

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (1)

Echnin (607099) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549467)

So they should postpone launch until they have enough units to fill demand, instead of selling them as they make them. Brilliant.

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (1)

D'Sphitz (699604) | more than 7 years ago | (#18550017)

Brilliant

Thanks!

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (3, Insightful)

vux984 (928602) | more than 7 years ago | (#18550535)

No.

Nintendo did a bang up job.

Their launch date was relatively inflexible, they NEEDED to be out of the gate before christmas, both to get the christmas hype, and to be in the running with the PS3 launch.

Next consider that Sony's PS3 launch shortages were largely aggravated by production problems leading to shortages. If they'd had the number of units they wanted to have, and told everyone they would have the PS3 launch would not have been 'un-findable' for weeks. And for quite a while now the PS3 has been readily available. Sony's assessment of initial demand was actually pretty good (excepting the EU launch) but they got screwed by production issues.

Nintendo, by contrast, promised DOUBLE the number of units that Sony did, and they DELIVERED them, and it STILL wasn't nearly enough, and even today 5 months later you STILL can't buy one. Now Nintendo clearly underestimated demand, but even if they'd guessed right they'd have had to have placed there initial orders in early 2006 in order to change anything, because they really couldn't move the launch date much more than a week. Nintendo got taken by surprise by the demand, and then there was little they could do.

Then a lot of people guessed it was just the christmas factor as the Wii became one of the holiday seasons 'hot items' in which case demand would have died off after christmas. Parent's who couldn't get a wii would get something else, and that would be the end of it. But it didn't, and pent up demand still devoured every unit they put on shelves as fast as they can make them.

So Nintendo started making plans to ramp up production because it was clear finally that it wasn't just a christmas hype thing, or the initial launch excitement, but genuine real demand. But ramping up takes time, and now we're approaching april... it will be interesting to see if they can finally get ahead of demand with 6 million+ units shipped, and now increasing the number of units made weekly. Its a problem ANYONE would love to have.

But suggesting Nintendo should have prepared better by having made 6 million? Or 10 million? units is absurd. (Hell we really don't know how many they'd need because they still haven't satisfied the pre-christmas demand - ie most of the people buying them now, have wanted them since before christmas -- we haven't even begun to really hit the group of people that might impulse buy one if they happened to see them in stores because they are almost never on shelves for more than hour out of an entire a week.)

After all, if they'd made 10 million of the things and then sold only 5, they'd be sitting on LOT of expensive inventory. And you have to remember that in early 2006 when they would have had to gauge the demand for their initial orders the jury was still out on whether the wii was a doomed virtual-boy gimmick. A lot of the game sites were disinterested and down on the whole concept. Several developers hadn't really committed to the platform because they weren't sure if it was going to have any legs. And the forums were filled with sony/xbox fanbois shitting on the lack of hd and the specs in general.

Nintendo knew they were trying to appeal to a broader audience than pixel-shader-snobs (the so-called "hardcore gamer"), but it would have been difficult to really gauge what the uptake of that audience would be like. After all non-gamers and ex-gamers, even if you could interest them in a console, aren't likely to be frothing at the mouth like a ps3 fanboy to get one the day it launches.

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18551001)

Nah, they just need to turn the Gamecube-Overclocking-Machine from "medium" up to "high". That'll take care of supply problems.

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (1)

KDR_11k (778916) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549091)

That just makes no sense, impulsive buyers don't place backorders, and most likely won't come back every week until they're in stock, they'll go buy an Xbox or PS3 to satisfy their urge to buy.

Not many people have a spare 350€ they can just throw out on a whim. Most don't buy a 250+€ device on impulse, that kind of money usually gets careful consideration.

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549187)

They have to balance the launch date, initial demand and ongoing demand. If they outfit a lot more manufacturing than is justified by ongoing demand, a bunch of it goes unused once the initial demand is met; putting off the launch date just to build up supply to meet the initial demand doesn't necessarily help anything. In this case, it seems like they just misjudged the market, but there are all sorts of other things that could factor in(like some huge jump in fixed costs to increase capacity a little bit).

The costs involved in the baseball thing are a little different, but I'm not real shocked that not every game is worth putting on tv(and I think that the teams make a bigger chunk on the gate than they do on tv rights, but I'm not sure).

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (1)

D'Sphitz (699604) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549359)

The costs involved in the baseball thing are a little different, but I'm not real shocked that not every game is worth putting on tv(and I think that the teams make a bigger chunk on the gate than they do on tv rights, but I'm not sure).

Not really, blacked out games are televised they're just not available in certain zipcodes, for any price. There's a demand for it, the games are available, MLB is in the business of selling games, but people just simply aren't allowed to buy them. Getting off topic but I found the original artical I referred to: http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/news?slug=jp-blackouts 061906&prov=yhoo&type=lgns [yahoo.com]

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (1)

Thanatos69 (993924) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549361)

heh, it is kinda getting old: http://www.ctrlaltdel-online.com/comic.php?d=20070 326 [ctrlaltdel-online.com]

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (1)

Sciros (986030) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549397)

LOL @ penis joke in comic. That never gets old!

Re:LOL @ "Wii Shortage" (2, Interesting)

Cius (918707) | more than 7 years ago | (#18551215)

Okay, I've no clue about the reality of this, but I'll relate "my friend's" story. Not "friend of a friend", just "my friend".

A friend was looking for a Wii, so he hit up Wal-mart. Wal-mart has everything right? Well, not that day they didn't. However, he managed to talk to manager that told him they were supposed to get some in through UPS the next day, a ton of them (my friend said 30 or so). Well, suitably excited, he shows up the next day and asks about them only to be told that they had none. Naturally, he bitched and moaned until they brought out manager. Lo and behold, it was the same manager he talked to. The guy instantly recognized him and told my friend that they did, indeed, have them in (again, about 30 of them) but that they were not allowed to bring them out or sell them yet. He didn't say why, he simply said he couldn't do anything. Well, my friend called him on it, raised hell again, really got on the guy about how he was anticipating their having one specifically because the guy told him they would. Eventually the guy relented and quietly slipped him one.

So, Nintendo hoarding? I dunno. But maybe retailers are up to something. I'm not sure what. Maybe some big coordinated sale like the "guaranteed in stock" thing that Wal-mart did a while back.

Anyway, for what it's worth, that's my story. Do with it what you will.

But, But, I'm Special... (5, Funny)

Dark Kenshin (764678) | more than 7 years ago | (#18548531)

"People in Japan at NCL [Nintendo Co. Ltd.] are making the best decisions that they can about which products get shipped to which market and when."

Well I like to take the ignorant and arrogant stance of "It should be in MY market, and it should be here NOW." Unfortunately my talks with these companies are not going so well...

Business people annoy me (5, Insightful)

Forrest Kyle (955623) | more than 7 years ago | (#18548565)

I think it says volumes about how far removed from the realities of engineering your average "business person" is that releasing something when it's done is viewed as some kind of rogue attitude.

I would rather have 80% fewer games released every year, if each game was well crafted by a team with full creative control who were passionate about what they were working on and had ample time to finish. The only thing releasing a deluge of unfinished but in-time-for-christmas junk accomplishes is it lines the pocket of the kinds of sharks the industry could do without.

Re:Business people annoy me (1)

tzhuge (1031302) | more than 7 years ago | (#18548793)

Daikatana and DNFs for every Half-Life It's certainly not a good thing to release incomplete games... but I think I prefer passionate and creative people to have some business pressures.

Re:Business people annoy me (1)

Jearil (154455) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549993)

DNF hasn't been released, so it's impossible to say if it was worth the wait yet.

However, I would refer to Blizzard as being a good example of how "When it's done" should work. Considering that Warcraft III by all accounts was supposed to be out about 2 years before it was finally released, and then everyone raved about how awesome it was, the extra time they took seemed to make it an excellent game. In a similar light, they did the same with World of Warcraft. Having one of the longest beta periods of any MMO which probably is how they arrived on top of that genre.

Bungie used to have the "When it's done" mantra as well, and that can be seen in the quality of their past products. I think that business pressure you were talking about was applied to them for Halo 2, and that's why it turned out, in my and quite a few others' opinions, as a lesser accomplishment.

Re:Business people annoy me (1)

Salmar (991564) | more than 7 years ago | (#18552363)

I agree completely with this statement. All of the most respected game companies—Square Enix, Blizzard, Nintendo— have used this strategy consistently throughout their lifetimes, and I believe it has payed off for them. I waited for FF III, and had no regrets. I waited for the Wii, and it was certainly worth it. Now, I'm waiting for Phantom Hourglass and Metroid Prime 3, and I don't expect to be disappointed, either. It takes considerable time and effort to become the best, and the best games are undoubtedly worth the wait...Neverwinter Nights, anyone?

Re:Business people annoy me (1)

Salmar (991564) | more than 7 years ago | (#18552495)

Oh, I forgot to add Rare. Let's see...Smash Bros., Star Fox, Conker, Viva Piñata...

Re:Business people annoy me (1)

nekura (600099) | more than 7 years ago | (#18554569)

Smash Brothers wasn't a Rare effort, nor was Star Fox (except for Star Fox Adventures).

Re:Business people annoy me (1)

Salmar (991564) | more than 7 years ago | (#18555545)

Duh, sorry. That was HAL.

Re:Business people annoy me (1)

c0d3h4x0r (604141) | more than 7 years ago | (#18548853)

Then it's not all business people who annoy you. It's only the short-sighted business people who annoy you.

Any business person with a good understanding of market forces and real concern for the long-term health and growth of the business understands the value of intangible things like customer satisfaction, corporate reputation, and word-of-mouth.

Unfortunately it is true that 95% of business people (and thus businesses) are incredibly short-sighted and stupid.

Re:Business people annoy me (2, Interesting)

The-Bus (138060) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549063)

I agree with you, but also note that on the business end of things, that's going to lead to failure unless you're the kind of studio (like Valve) that can shoulder interminably long delays.

I knew one of the developers for one of those really half-assed paintball games from the late 90's and he said they just didn't code for any AI, eventhough you could play against "computer opponents" -- what they had was nothing even remotely resembling AI, just some basic, possibly randomized script.

Who knows if that was the right or the wrong decision.

For licensed games, the title is more important than the content. The game needs to hit when the movie comes out, or when the album comes out, or when there's a new season of the show, etc.

Take the atrocious 50 Cent: Bulletproof game, for example. Vivendi Universal got that game out about 9 days after the movie hit theatres. In their eyes (and they're probably right) releasing it when it was "ready" (2006? Never?) would've cost them more in development time and lost sales than releasing a crappy game.

I wish you were right. I wish the market as a whole looked at "quality" games above all else. But they don't. Licensed crap like Bulletproof (or the nth Pacman or Sonic game) sells based on the name alone. Money gets made, and parents don't care because the (1)6-year old kid playing the game doesn't know any better.

The way for developers to stop making crappy games is to stop buying crappy games. But half a million people still bought the 50 Cent game (and other games like it) so this won't end.

Don't blame the business people. They're just following the money, which comes from idiot consumers. Teams like the one you describe are probably working for the good studios already anyway.

Re:Business people annoy me (1)

Mex (191941) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549273)

The dangers of not having someone to whip engineers into shape are also present. Witness Duke Nukem Forever, which is the ultimate "Release it when it's ready" horror story.

A balance is needed. An engineer would work ages on a project if he didn't need to make deadlines.

Re:Business people annoy me (1)

porcupine8 (816071) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549435)

This is very true. I learned my lesson last year when I took a year off work before grad school, thinking I'd work on several projects I have in mind (some freelance writing, for example). Ha! With a complete lack of deadlines, I am useless! Self-set deadlines with no external pressure do nothing for me, either. Now that I'm back in school, I'm doing a great job of keeping on top of projects both for my classes and out of class.

Re:Business people annoy me (1)

cowscows (103644) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549653)

Correct. Besides the "if it weren't for the last 10 minutes, nothing would ever get done" effect that deadlines can have, design in general is one of those things where you can almost never step back and say 100% that it's finished. There's always going to be something else to tweak, or another idea to try, etc. Eventually you have to just call it a day and save the rest for the next project.

Re:Business people annoy me (1)

Aggrav8d (683620) | more than 7 years ago | (#18551121)

Ah, but you wouldn't have 80% less. You would have a longer wait between announcement of a title's development and it's subsequent release.

Based on that logic DNF will blow. our. minds.

Of course the longer development cycle always generates a hue & cry from the consumers. Maybe placing all the blame on the publishers indicates a convenient blind spot? After all, they have to please their buyers (ie you).

In other news... (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18548629)

Sony prays for a shortage. [penny-arcade.com]

normal post launch game void (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18548637)

Nintendo is notorious for having weak post launch title support. I remember having my DS sit around for a long time as there was pretty much one game a month being released (Zoo Keeper was the best post launch title for like 6 months). Everyone knew it would be even worse with the Wii - since a lot of developers didn't jump on the band wagon until last E3 - and at that point, it would take AT LEAST a year for someone to make a Wii game at that point.

Re:normal post launch game void (1)

zeromusmog (260817) | more than 7 years ago | (#18561715)

Where's the slew of awesome PS3 launch titles then?

Really, all this complaining about the Wii's launch titles is getting god damned annoying. They gave you a ZELDA GAME for crying out loud. The Virtual Console is a great way to spend money and waste time until more AAA Wii games come out. I'm really not sure what people expected! Blowjobs?

I Believe Them (0, Redundant)

endianx (1006895) | more than 7 years ago | (#18548653)

I believe them. I think Nintendo was just as surprised at the Wii's success as I was and now the are struggling to meet demand.

I thought the Wii was going to fail horribly. I am happy to be proven wrong though 'cause between Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo, Nintendo is my favorite company (or rather, the only one of the three I don't hate).

Re:I Believe Them (1)

gilesjuk (604902) | more than 7 years ago | (#18561289)

Indeed and the contrast is that Sony expected the UK demand to be high, yet stock level in a local store was 50, no Wii and plenty of XBox 360s. If the PS3 wasn't so expensive Nintendo would have a really bad time.

Who let Gamestop talk? (0, Troll)

Wazukkithemaster (826055) | more than 7 years ago | (#18548821)

I refuse to believe that Gamestop would have any sort of information or even special insight into the shortage of anything. They sell things that people hand them... they hype what people tell them to. This is a prime example of what happens when they attempt to think for themselves. Perhaps this is a version of the Dilbert Principle in that every layer of management is dumber than the one below it. I'd rather trust the clerk at the gamestop store... and i'm not about to do that either.

Oh, and the thing about the title shortage is not necessarily a shortage of titles but a shortage of playable titles. There are plenty of games that got beat up in reviews and just aren't fun to play. But I'd still say that on average the quality of Wii games is far better than that of Xbox 360, PS2, or Xbox (haven't played PS3)

Re:Who let Gamestop talk? (1)

TheBestNameHere (1082045) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549277)

I really don't agree. In fact, I feel the Wii has the worst ratio of good to bad games out of the next-gen consoles. Just go over to GameRankings.com and look at the 50 or so games released on the Wii so far, almost all of them are terrible outside of Zelda. 1. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess WII 94.8% 2. Super Paper Mario WII 85.0% 3. WarioWare: Smooth Moves WII 82.3% 4. Madden NFL 07 WII 81.7% 5. Trauma Center: Second Opinion 81.0% 6. The Godfather: Blackhand Edition 79.1% 7. Rayman Raving Rabbids 77.0% 8. Wii Sports WII 76.6% 9. Elebits WII 75.0% 10. Heatseeker WII 75.0% 11. Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 75.0% 12. Excite Truck WII 74.7% 13. Super Swing Golf 74.3% 14. Metal Slug Anthology WII 74.1% 15. SSX Blur WII EA Sports 73.5% 16. Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz 73.2% 17. Tiger Woods PGA Tour 07 WII 73.0% 18. SD Gundam: Scad Hammers WII Bandai 72.0% 19. Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 2 71.2% 20. Disney's Chicken Little: Ace in Action WII 71.0% 21. Kororinpa: Marble Mania WII 70.8% 22. Sonic and the Secret Rings WII 70.6% 23. Prince of Persia Rival Swords WII 70.0% 24. Tony Hawk's Downhill Jam WII 69.8% 25. Call of Duty 3 69.3% 26. Barnyard WII 68.3% 27. Cars WII 67.3% 28. Ice Age 2: The Meltdown WII 67.3% 29. The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy 65.8% 30. Need for Speed Carbon WII 65.4% 31. Red Steel WII Ubisoft 65.1% 32. TMNT WII Ubisoft 64.7% 33. Avatar: The Last Airbender WII 63.6% 34. SpongeBob SquarePants: Creature from the Krusty Krab 63.6% 35. Gottlieb Pinball Classics WII 63.3% 36. Cooking Mama: Cook Off WII 62.3% 37. Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell Double Agent WII 60.8% 38. Blazing Angels: Squadrons of WWII WII 60.8% 39. Wii Play WII Nintendo 34 59.3% 40. Disney's Meet the Robinsons WII 57.7% 41. Monster 4X4: World Circuit WII 52.7% 42. Rampage: Total Destruction WII 52.1% 43. Medal of Honor: Vanguard WII 7.4 50.8% 44. World Series of Poker: Tournament of Champions 49.5% 45. Happy Feet WII 47.2% 46. Open Season WII 45.8% 47. The Ant Bully WII 45.2% 48. Rapala Tournament Fishing WII 45.0% 49. Tamagotchi Party On! WII 45.0% 50. Escape from Bug Island WII 43.5% 51. GT Pro Series WII 39.7% 52. Far Cry Vengeance WII 37.5%

Re:Who let Gamestop talk? (3, Interesting)

rhizome (115711) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549445)

I really don't agree. In fact, I feel the Wii has the worst ratio of good to bad games out of the next-gen consoles.

Okay, this is just retarded and meaningless. You're using an online ratings site to say what you "feel," that everything besides Zelda sucks on the Wii. The only conclusion I can make is that you haven't played any of them at all, and perhaps you've never even touched a Wii. Wario Ware is an amazing piece of work that actually uses the controls nicely, SSX is great, and if you go to, say, the IGN Wii boards you'll find passionate attachments across the board for many of those games.

A criticism I'd allow is that a lot of the first wave games have been ports of existing games or engines with an updated control scheme to account for the lack of gamepad and all. People don't like SSX because the controls are too hard, other games are too short, and so on. There is definitely a bunch of whining about the learning curve on the controls and I think this is very healthy.

I think what we have here, both in the post I'm replying to and in this story overall is the fact that 90% of the gaming industry was taken by surprise by the Wii's popularity. Everybody thought graphics were paramount and the PS3 was going to blow the world away. So now we have a bunch of gaming touts who got caught out in their predictions and so now have to invent criticisms to re-establish their pundit primacy. The quickest way to predict the future reliably is that things are not very good right now: pessimism is the stock and trade of industry journalists. This isn't to excuse game studios, because most of them had to radically shift gears from the XBox360/PS3/HDTV gaming market to take advantage of the Wii's surprising popularity. So what we see is a lot of repurposed old titles released to fill the channel, then a slow trickle of new games that are specifically tailored to the unique traits of the Wii.

I think history is telling us that Nintendo hit a home run with the Wii, and all the stats nerds are sitting in the bleachers taking potshots at the visiting team for winning the game. XBox and Playstation are the stock in trade for many gamers, so it's predictable that they'd bite back when the cutesy Nintendo nerds get the advantage. Sour grapes in full effect.

Re:Who let Gamestop talk? (1)

MBCook (132727) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549921)

I'd like to comment on SSX. It's the last game for the Wii I played. I will admit that I wasn't great with the control scheme, but I know that would have changed with a little more time. I spent enough time that I began to glimpse just how good the controls could be, but I've been playing the SSX series since the first so my brain is a little hard-wired.

That said, from my time with it I would have considered it a mediocre game. SSX 3 was a MASSIVE achievement and I think just about perfect. SSX On Tour (or whatever the last one was) was good, but it just didn't have that same smooth coherent feel of SSX 3, and I felt it was trying to hard to be metal. That said, I INSTANTLY recognized most of the tracks that I played on the game for the Wii. The game has so much recycled content, I just felt it an insult, like they didn't even try. They wanted a new control scheme. Good for them. They couldn't make new tracks, or at least re-mix the parts of the old ones better? Instead I felt like I was playing a "best of" game with a control scheme that I couldn't get the hang of (for the short time I spent with the game). These two things combined made me put the game down. I didn't want to invest the time in the control scheme to play the tracks I've played before.

I really like the series, but I'm still afraid that it hit it's zenith with 3.

Complaints aside, I'm glad to see someone really trying with the Wiimote in something other than an FPS or party game. I can't wait to see what comes out in the future if this is an indicator of what's to come. I find myself rather un-impressed by the "let's take Prince of Persia and make them push the Wiimote to punch" style so many companies seem to want to use. Zelda did a decent job with this, even if it was still obvious that it was designed for the 'cube in many ways.

Re:Who let Gamestop talk? (1)

Kevin Stevens (227724) | more than 7 years ago | (#18550639)

Well as a Wii owner that was initially very excited about the Wii, I have to agree with the parent poster. Zelda is great, Wii Sports is fun, but after a week or so, only with friends. I have played Wario Ware, and I really wasn't all that impressed. I just bought Wii Play, which was hardly worth the $5 premium on a wiimote to buy. Excite truck? The controls are not good, and the game is nothing special at all. FPS's ported to the Wii just don't seem like a good idea. It is a different kind of system, and it needs different kinds of games. I have no interest in playing an FPS on the Wii. Red Steel... I have not played, mostly because three other friends of mine told me to not even bother.

I think the Wii will eventually be a great console, but as of right now, there are not a whole lot of games out there. I don't think you are right to just dismiss his claims and call it sour grapes, especially since most Wii owners I know also have a 360 or a PS3.

Re:Who let Gamestop talk? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18551161)

"There is definitely a bunch of whining about the learning curve on the controls and I think this is very healthy."

What?? I thought the big appeal of the wiimote was that it was intuitive and you got to play games in a more natural way. Big surprise, it turned out to be more fanboy doubletalk.

I am thoroughly amazed at how people can spin ANY situation to either a postive (Nintendo) or a negative (Sony) to fit their agendas. No matter what Sony does, it's bad because of "blah", and no matter what Nintendo does, it's good because of "blah"...

Re:Who let Gamestop talk? (1)

LKM (227954) | more than 7 years ago | (#18565513)

In fact, I feel the Wii has the worst ratio of good to bad games out of the next-gen consoles

That's always the case with the console that "wins" the "console war."

Re:Who let Gamestop talk? (1)

giarcgood (857371) | more than 7 years ago | (#18570173)

Formating 100%

Meanwhile..... (1)

turminalillness (753258) | more than 7 years ago | (#18548831)

There are plenty of Wii's to be had online @ Amazon, Super Walmart AND Gamestop... so long as you agree to purchase the "bundle" they've crafted. Any of these retailers will be glad to ship a Wii to you tomorrow if you buy 7 games, an extra controller, a nunchunk and a memory card.

1) Wait for Nex-Gen console release.
2) Sell first shipment of units in one day.
3) Hold remaning console shipments hostage unless you buy 7 games.
4) Profit!!

Re:Meanwhile..... (1)

Volante3192 (953645) | more than 7 years ago | (#18548907)

http://wiitracker.com/ [wiitracker.com] would disagree with you. Even the bundles rarely last for long.

Re:Meanwhile..... (1)

oneiros27 (46144) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549391)

Even the bundles are going within a day or two.

My suggestion, if you want a Wii, is to watch the Target tracker at crayz.org [crayz.org] .

Stuff will show up mid-week, but they don't release 'till Sunday. Make sure you're there in the first hour on Sunday morning, and I've been able to get one. I've actually done it multiple times to get 'em for people. (this last time, they didn't sell out from the initial people lined up, and we picked up an extra one for my friend's niece).

(I'm in the DC metro area, so it's possible you need to be there before stores open in some areas ... but call ahead, ask them how many they have, and how fast they've been selling out, and you can try to figure out which one's best to stake out in you area)

Meanwhile, Microsoft's spokesman, Ringo Starr... (4, Funny)

Channard (693317) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549009)

.. commented that there was now an adequate supply of 360 on the market. And that each third console will come with a randomly packaged Thomas the Tank Engine faceplate.

Re:Meanwhile, Microsoft's spokesman, Ringo Starr.. (1)

nbehary (140745) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549179)

Thank you, the title of that comment made me laugh more than I have in a while reading Slashdot.....wish I had mod points.

Sony's PS3 spokesman John Lennon added... (4, Funny)

theurge14 (820596) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549341)

...that things are "kinda dead over here".

The beatles of Video games... Finish the whole set (1)

trdrstv (986999) | more than 7 years ago | (#18550289)

I love when George Harrison gives interviews. the Beatles references come flying.

So a line of: "Nintendo's George Harrison told Next-Gen.biz in a phone interview that...."

gets followed up with a: "Meanwhile, Microsoft's spokesman, Ringo Starr..."

Now to me this makes Sony = 'Paul McCartney' Who is going through some difficult times now (with the Divorce/ poor console sales...)

And Who's Left? John Lennon AKA: Sega... died before their time...

definitely holding back production (5, Interesting)

Thanatos69 (993924) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549307)

Lets look at the numbers, depending on who you go through:

http://nexgenwars.com/ [nexgenwars.com]
360 - 10.8M
PS3 - 2.3M
Wii - 5.3M

http://www.vgcharts.org/ngwars.php [vgcharts.org]
360 - 9.8M
PS3 - 2.8M
Wii - 6.3M

so yeah, I can definitely see how they are holding back on production given that the system has been out for 4 months now and selling 1.5M a month. Could you imagine if they weren't holding back?

Re:definitely holding back production (1)

acidrain69 (632468) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549511)

Are you being sarcastic? Do you have any idea the resources involved in building and shipping 1.5 million consoles a month? Xbox 360 has had over a year to get that many numbers out.

Re:definitely holding back production (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#18550269)

No, he definitely wasn't being sarcastic. Can you just imagine what the post would read if he was being sarcastic?

Re:definitely holding back production (1)

ivan256 (17499) | more than 7 years ago | (#18550551)

You're absolutely right. Nintendo has never had to do anything like this before...

Oh, wait... Yes they have. Over and over again, and the last time was less than a year ago. Or perhaps you forgot about the Nintendo DS lite which sold just as quickly? Or the DS the christmas before, or the GBA SP? Last christmas (2005), Nintendo averaged over two million handhelds per month for four months over the Christmas season.

Check your division on that 1.5 million number (5.5 divided by 4.5 is 1.2), and remember that they had months to stockpile before release if they wanted to. The fact of the matter (and I say this as a happy Wii owner) is that Nintendo did not plan for success with the Wii. There is *no* excuse for shortages in April, five months after the launch. Even Microsoft got their act together by then.

Re:definitely holding back production (2, Informative)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 7 years ago | (#18551283)

It took twice as long for the X360 to sell where the Wii is now. I hardly would call that getting their act together.

Nintendo was doing better at the end of December than Xbox did at the end of March.

Nintendo has had something like this before. Shortages on massivly selling items reaping them massive net income.

The only console that was doing this well at 4 months in the US was the N64 (I only looked at the US market) and it was a stagered launch so it is not quite the same thing.

Nintendohas produced a massive amount of Wiis, more than any other console at this point in its life (I am making this as an assumption, but would bet at least 4:1 on it).

Re:definitely holding back production (1)

Doctor_Jest (688315) | more than 7 years ago | (#18553881)

Which necessarily means that, like the DS shortage at christmas, they're not keeping up with demand. OR, they are and are simply not giving consoles to regions that have taken longer to sell them than others... It's their marketing perogative, of course... I'm not faulting N for getting consoles to priority markets...

Having said that, it's all about moving product, and if Nintendo wants to ride the goodwill of the Wii, they'd best move up some production schedules and turn the factories on 24/7 to meet the demand, because it won't last. No "unprecedented" demand will last... things will distract the great unwashed, the casual gamer will think of something else to do (summer vacations, etc.) and traditionally slow retail sales will creep up and serve to put lots of Wii stock on the shelf so that when they eventually get some more games out for it, there might be another surge in demand...

We'll see this quarter if they can put more boxes on the shelves. :) Because I still want one... But as time goes on, I want one less and less... :)

Re:definitely holding back production (1)

MikeBabcock (65886) | more than 7 years ago | (#18552525)

Let me get this straight. The Wii, and less than half the price, has only sold about twice as many units as PS3s? Sony's doing better than I thought actually. And wait a minute, the PS3 has sold about 1/4 to 1/3 as many units as 360's despite having been on the market a year less? Not bad at all.

Glad everyone can do math around here when the Playstation Sux0rz articles come up.

Re:definitely holding back production (2, Interesting)

ClassMyAss (976281) | more than 7 years ago | (#18556661)

The Wii, and less than half the price, has only sold about twice as many units as PS3s? Sony's doing better than I thought actually...(snip)...Glad everyone can do math around here when the Playstation Sux0rz articles come up.
Yet from the other side of this issue, one might notice that the PS3 has only sold half as many units as the Wii, and the Wii is still flying off the shelves within minutes of arriving, whereas PS3s are just sitting there in many locations. Even factoring in the price difference (which is far less relevant for future game development effort than number of consoles out there), this still means that there is more demand in dollar value for the Wii. I don't know how the PS3 is going to compare to the 360, but by just about any metric that you look at it is losing out to the Wii.

Don't get me wrong, I do think that Sony can build a great system. The PS2 was a stunning success, and it rightly destroyed the competition in the last round. And I'm sure the PS3 is a marvelous piece of equipment. I don't really know, because I can't afford one at the moment. But as all the console companies should realize (Nintendo learned this the hard way), past industry dominance does not insulate you from being unseated in the future, and I think Sony was really banking on the fact that they could ride the PS2's success when they set their price point - a mistake largely caused by their desire to win the much more lucrative format war over HD discs. $600 is just too much for a toy, plain and simple, no matter how many bells, whistles, and PPUs it has.

Re:definitely holding back production (1)

MikeBabcock (65886) | more than 7 years ago | (#18559379)

Nobody really cares if Sony loses out to the Wii in sheer demand since the Wii just can't handle some types of games that the PS3 and 360 can. There will be games (like Wii Sports) that just don't fit the PS3 and fit the Wii excellently, but I doubt you'll ever see the likes of F.E.A.R. or Oblivion showing up on a Wii.

I'm sure there are developers excited about making a buck who will jump on the Wii bandwagon and there's nothing wrong with that -- but you'll end up in the long run with many of the same comments as for the very popular PS2 of last generation (and still now) -- "So many of the games suck though!"

Now sure, I've defended the fact myself that despite the huge number of terrible / sucky games for the PS2, there are quite a few good gems ... but that's the result of developers all focusing on a system simply for the number of users it has as an installed base.

Building a game for the PS3 or 360 is a different story though -- developers who are committed to making truly incredible games on an AI or graphical or size basis will be drawn to the 360 and PS3's powerful engines or the PS3's much larger storage size. They target different demographics, and the games already reflect that at this point.

All that to say, nobody at Sony probably cares $0.02 how many units Nintendo moves -- they will still be able to woo the developers who want to make the games that just can't be made for the Wii for the people who want those games. The millions of people who've bought a 360 or PS3 (or the latest NVidia or ATI graphics card at the price of a PS3) prove there are quite a few of those people too.

Effect of marketing.. (4, Insightful)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549363)

Do you think the "wii would like to play" campaign has helped this a bunch?

Compare it to the PS3 commercials, where like a creepy baby explodes or ... i dunno, i dont know what the fuck I'm looking at. And then it says "its thinking". Maybe that was Dreamcast, they promoted it with nonsense too. I remember the commercial for Jet Grind Radio, and it was a bunch of screaming japanese people, I guess spoofing wacky japanese TV. You wouldn't know what the commercial was for, and the game itself kicked ass - all you needed was to show some ingame footage to sell it.

I see PS3's campaign and MSFT's skip-rope jump in the game campaign, and as a gamer, wonder "what the fuck are they tyring to sell me?"

Nintendo's sort of say "hey, check this out - it has no plans to dominate your whole life or change your lifestyle, or reinvent the way you watch tv - it's just a fun toy that anyone could have a blast with, and it's cheap too"

I guess I'm saying I see Sony and MSFT distancing themselves from selling a "gaming console". They want to pretend they sell obscure services and convergance and other crap people dont understand, or even want.

Re:Effect of marketing.. (1)

xerxesVII (707232) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549665)

Call me an outlier if you want, but I bought a Dreamcast because I saw that spot and just had to play whatever that commercial was selling me.

Re:Effect of marketing.. (1)

mgabrys_sf (951552) | more than 7 years ago | (#18552959)

Well, Sony's marketing is due to Chiat-Day always pushing the terminally weird. The 1984 ad for Apple didn't show the product, hell - the first infiniti commercials just showed rocks and waterfalls. Blame it on the LA offices of TBWA Chiat-Day (just noticed they closed their SF offices - wiki's wrong on that - so is google maps, omnicom did re-open the office under a different name however).

And you don't have to have worked their to know what they're about - but it helps (St. Louis office - closed in 1998 or thereabouts - I left in 1996).

Re:Effect of marketing.. (1)

Raenex (947668) | more than 7 years ago | (#18563241)

The 1984 ad was brilliant. It worked on all levels. When all ads on TV were cheesy spots, it was a mini-movie. It had the "1984" vibe. The perfect message -- anti-IBM (unfriendly, corporate). The perfect timing -- launched during the Superbowl, before Superbowl ads were a big deal. If I recall it put Superbowl ads on the map.

The PS3 ad campaign, while I'll give it style points, was totally the wrong message. Who the hell wants to buy an expensive, obsidian overlord dominating their living room? And the creepy baby! Uncanny valley is not where you want to place your console.

The Wii's ad campaign was kinda weird too, with the Japanese and little car. Totally un-American (think big meals and big cars). But at least they showed ordinary people playing and having fun.

Slashdot refutes accusations of illiteracy (1)

Nick Barnes (11927) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549367)

"Denies", or "rejects", not "refutes". Slashdot: even the headlines suck.

Re:Slashdot refutes accusations of illiteracy (1)

mckniffen (983873) | more than 7 years ago | (#18550365)

You do realize that "Denies" and "Rejects" have different meanings than the word "Refutes" right? Fail...

Re:Slashdot refutes accusations of illiteracy (1)

Chinju (662523) | more than 7 years ago | (#18551101)

Well, if he thought they had the same meaning, he wouldn't have proposed the switch, would he?

We still have lines... (2, Informative)

Cyno01 (573917) | more than 7 years ago | (#18549623)

I work in retail, in the electronics dept, we get at least 10 calls a day and as many people stopping in asking about the wii. We get shipments in randomly and sporadically. We got 12 in on tuesday and sold the 4 we could in less than an hour. The other 8 we had to hold because our weekly flyer promised a minimum of 8 per store on sunday. So this week i've told at least 50 people that if they want one of those 8 Wiis to be at the store when we open at 7 on sunday. Its like that every 3 weeks or so when the Wii gets advertised, people lining up at 5 in the morning. Meanwhile we have more than a dozen PS3s upstairs that we cant sell. We had less, but then people returned some...

I'm personally very happy with my Wii, got it at launch, only had to wait in line about 10 hours, and that was lots of fun, everybody had DS' and booze. Only my second console and the first one i've bought new. Im somewhat dissapointed with the lineup so far, but im looking forward to super paper mario and mario party 8 (as well as SSBB and Metroid), and im sure it will get better. I have spent quite a bit on virtual console game, and those are keeping me occupied. Since i never owned any of those systems, its not a bad deal for me.

I am considering maybe getting a 360 though, mostly because i know as much fun as the wii is, we're not gonna see games like Gears of War, Lost Planet, Crackdown, GRAW2, etc on it (not to mention Fable 2, KotOR 3 etc). I was considering getting a PS2 for a while, but i hate sony with a passion and Guitar Hero is coming out for 360 next week, so theres not much need now. The only thing off the top of my head that i still want to play on PS2 is katamari.

Correction to title (1)

Daetrin (576516) | more than 7 years ago | (#18550043)

I know this is blatantly obvious to anyone who stops to think about it, but Nintendo is trying to refute the charge that the shortage is part of a ploy on their part to hold back existing units until a later date. They are not trying to refute that there is an actual shortage of units. The linked article has a much clearer title, "Nintendo Rejects Wii Shortage Plot." Both because of the "plot" bit and because "Refutes" indicates that Nintendo has provided some kind of proof (which would be difficult to do without providing more access to their books that i believe they would be willing to do,) while "Rejects" just means that they have disagreed with the charge. [/nitpick]

What's the contradiction? (1)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | more than 7 years ago | (#18550485)

...Wii shortages are due to demand. Nintendo's George Harrison told Next-Gen.biz in a phone interview that "That's not at all the case. We have worldwide territories that are all competing over the available production.


What's the contradiction here? One side says "there's too much demand" and the other side says "there's not enough supply for demand". I think both "sides" here agree that "there is not enough supply to meet demand".

It if were Nintendo, I'd also intentionally keep supplies limited. As we've seen, consumers who hear "Wiis are scarce" turn into the knuckleheads who will wait in line, and more importantly, pay premium prices for every Wii that dribbles out. Retailers also win when marks come stumbling into the same store 4 or 5 times looking for their Wii and foolishly walk out with a new CD or some other piece of crap they didn't intend to buy when they left their mothers' basements.

Re:What's the contradiction? (1)

miro f (944325) | more than 7 years ago | (#18552055)

the contradiction (which isn't clear in TFSummary) is that the supply was intentionally kept back. That is what GameSpot is accusing and Nintendo is denying.

Re:What's the contradiction? (1)

dukieduke (918198) | more than 7 years ago | (#18569907)

It if were Nintendo, I'd also intentionally keep supplies limited. As we've seen, consumers who hear "Wiis are scarce" turn into the knuckleheads who will wait in line, and more importantly, pay premium prices for every Wii that dribbles out.


What you suggest Nintendo do defies all financial logic (short of the twisted kind).
They are in a very short period of time before the next price-drop amongst their competitors occurs. Sony has already dropped the price of the PS3 in Japan. With the introduction of 360 Elite this week, Microsoft will likely get rid of their lower-end "Core" system before the holiday season. Look for prices comparable to the Wii's current premium price.
"Dribbling out" small quantities makes absolutely no sense as this is the time to produce as many units as you can manufacture before the "knuckleheads" disappear from the lines and get distracted by the next shiny object.
As in all life-lessons, follow the money. Think about it: Nintendo would clear as much money as they can from the early-adopters. It turns out there is a helluva lot now waiting for their Wii. Why would they wait until an inevitable price decrease before releasing more units? As a public relations stunt?
Naw, Nintendo makes money instead of dribbling it in.

Re:What's the contradiction? (1)

Colourspace (563895) | more than 7 years ago | (#18691641)

I agree, I see absolutely no logic to Nintendo doing this. One word - cashflow. Nobody likes to have stock that is paid for on 60 or 90 day terms sat around. Though you could argue that a company as profitable as Nintendo could cushion this for a while, it still just doesn't sit right with me. As we say, make hay while the sun shines. Conspiracy theories are great but are just that - conspiracies.

6 million is dogging it? (3, Insightful)

kinglink (195330) | more than 7 years ago | (#18551053)

They have sold 6 million units. All my local stores have regular shipments. I haven't seen any still because they just go too fast. That's not exactly bad numbers, it's just higher then expected demand.

In 5 monthes they sold more than half what the 360 sold in a year with constant shipments. I'm sure Nintendo is just holding back production, because they don't need the money right?

Let's just look at this, Nintendo is going to ship as many units as they can, they arn't holding it back. They might not be forcing their employees to work overtime just to ship an extra 10 percent of units. 6 million units is an amazing number and they still constantly sell out.

Might they hold back a couple in the last couple weeks? Maybe. But I don't think they have been since January it's gotten easier to find and there's not as many news stories about it, but I still don't see them laying around for days, weeks, monthes at a time.

Let's look at the other side. Sony. Sony had a massive launch people waited for days out in the cold and almost killed themselves to get a PS3. They shipped less than they promised (and around half what the wii shipped the first day) and saturated the market. At this point it's completely saturated PS3s are laying around on the shelves and Sony is claiming "victory" any way they can. The European Ps3 launches were ok in that everyone got a Ps3, but how could you not sell out? The playstation 3 is shipping out 6 million units this month. The Early reports are a third of them have been sold. It'll probably hit a half because of a European launch. And we get weekly reports of "why" they arn't selling so fast because they are successful at getting that many units out there.

The 360 also had some early shipment problems. Systems did appear on the shelves in the next couple months but even then neither system had half the numbers the Wii has.

I think Gamestop is feeling the fact that people WANT the wii, and Nintendo has only alloted them so many. Best buy and Walmart can get 20+ systems in a single shipment, Gamestop is lucky to hit double digits per store in most shipments. This happened at launch and still happens now. Gamestop just doesn't get as many units (per store) as the other chains, even though their focus is only on game products, that would piss me off too, so methinks this is a case of sour grapes and the delicious Wiine. (sorry, but at least I didn't go with "whine".)

Re:6 million is dogging it? (1)

Doctor_Jest (688315) | more than 7 years ago | (#18553949)

We're seeing what a "2nd console" strategy looks like (It's definitely working)... Nintendo didn't try to out-polygon or out-horsepower the other two... the sales reflect that at the price point of $250 (less than the last gen PS2 and Xbox launch price by $50) they can sell tons to younger audiences, a 2nd console to a gamer with a 360 or PS3, and to people who just don't game intently. :) Let's face it, $400 to $600 for a console is moving beyond the "accessible to everyone" strategy and towards the "computer game" category... where it costs you more to play the "best" (using that term loosely) games. :)

I think it's pretty neat that they went this way (it wasn't what I was thinking they would do), but I wonder how long it'll sustain itself... It's going to grow old and passe' as time goes on (for some at least), and with 5 year+ lifespans of consoles (more or less), I wonder if the Wii won't have a Wii-2.0 before we see another XBox or Playstation?

*shrug* I think Gamestop is frustrated... there's a goldmine of sell-through and accessory glob-ons that they're missing out on because they can't get any appreciable stock of Wiis on hand... it's probably driving them nutty..

Past experience (1)

gtada (191158) | more than 7 years ago | (#18551463)

Hmmm. I don't know much about how long it takes to manufacture these things, but I wonder if the last few consoles and their unremarkable sales figures has made them cautious. Up until Christmas the buzz was all around PS3 until everybody saw how great the Wii is. Now they're probably scrambling to fill orders.

Yes, there is a shortage. (1)

Zetta Matrix (245803) | more than 7 years ago | (#18553083)

I will believe there's not a shortage when I can go to Amazon.com and buy a Wii at MSRP from a mass-market (r)etailer like Amazon themselves or Target, etc (not an individual seller at a higher price).

Just checked.... you can't (at least in the US).
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